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Backflow Prevention and Cross Connection Control

Backflow is a term used in plumbing for an unwanted flow of water in the reverse direction.1 A backflow prevention device is used to protect potable water supplies from contamination or pollution due to backflow.

In water supply systems, water is normally maintained at a significant pressure to enable water to flow from the tap, shower, or other fixture. Water pressure may fail or be reduced when a water main bursts, pipes freeze, or there is unexpectedly high demand on the water system (for example, when several fire hydrants are opened). Reduced pressure in the pipe may allow contaminated water from the soil, from storage, or from other sources to be drawn up into the distribution system.2

The risks of backflow can be mitigated through preventative measures such as the installation of backflow prevention devices and through education to ensure that cross-connections (between potable water systems and other plumbing systems) do not occur.3

The Indiana Department of Environmental Management and the Indiana State Department of Health, along with the Indiana Plumbing Code, have established regulations to protect the quality of water in the drinking water distribution network. These regulations and obligations for the consumer and the water utility are summarized in the Adobe PDF Cross Connection Control and Backflow Prevention Manual available from the Indiana Department of Environmental Management website.

Citizens Energy Group has partnered with Aqua Backflow, a leading technology-based backflow management firm, to implement this program to protect the public drinking water supply from backflow contamination. Citizens will only accept required backflow device test results submitted electronically through the new Aqua Backflow web portal or mobile app. All backflow testers must be certified by the Indiana Department of Environmental Management and registered with Aqua Backflow prior to submitting testing results. For more information on Aqua Backflow, or to register as a tester, please visit Aqua Backflow.


Frequently Asked Questions

What is a cross connection?
What is backflow?
What is a backflow prevention device?
What are the common types of backflow prevention devices?
How do I know if I have a backflow prevention device installed?
As a customer, what are my responsibilities related to backflow prevention?
I received a letter from a company called Aqua Backflow regarding backflow prevention. Are they a trusted partner of Citizens Energy Group?
Who can test my backflow device?
How do I submit my backflow test result to Citizens?
I am a device tester, how do I submit test information?
What if I no longer use my irrigation system?
Who regulates backflow prevention?